May is officially Mental Health Awareness Month, but isn’t being of sound mind important every day of the year? Show your support for employee well-being by encouraging staff at every level to check in with themselves — and professionals — as part of their ongoing personal wellness routine. Today’s text-based support and virtual options make it easy.
Taking care of mental health can improve relationships and productivity, both of which are critical in any workplace.1 Remember, even if it appears that people are doing okay on the surface, there may be something or someone outside of work they are worrying about.
The conditions of the pandemic sparked and amplified mental health issues, many of which were already becoming more visible in the workplace, at schools, and in society in general. Consider these statistics coming out of that historically isolating, universally unsettling experience:
- Rates of burnout, depression, and anxiety are “at record levels” in the workplace.2
- In the 10 years leading up to the pandemic, suicidal thoughts and behaviors, persistent sadness, and feelings of hopelessness increased by 40% among young people.3
- Depression and anxiety cost an estimated $1 trillion globally in lost productivity per year (12 billion working days).4
- Twenty-one million adults are living with depression.5
- One out of eight ER visits is for mental illness or substance abuse in adults.
- Suicide is the second leading cause of death among 10- to 14-year-olds.
- One in five U.S. adults experience mental illness each year.6
Mental Health Support for Every Person
True, these numbers are staggering. But being a great employer means taking care of your people, and your people’s people! At Portico, we want to help you reach every person in your organization with high quality, easy to access mental health support.
With constant innovation in the healthcare field, there’s a format for everyone: whether employees are remote and rural or on-site daily; prefer texting (teenagers!) and digital options versus in-person therapy; or can’t find much time for an appointment but will hop online to explore webinars and other educational resources.
Wherever your employees and their loved ones are regarding self-discovery and mental wellness, there are confidential mental health support services available to them at any hour.
Employee Assistance Available to Every Employee — No Exclusions
Effective immediately, at no additional cost, all employees and members of their household can access confidential 24/7 support through the Carelon Behavioral Health (formally Beacon Wellbeing) Employee Assistance Program (EAP). This is an incredible benefits expansion! In the past, only Portico health plan members were eligible.
The EAP provides counseling over the phone to address things like unexpected life changes, stress, anxiety, depression, family and relationship issues, substance use, and grief. And new this year, employees can also access licensed counselors from the convenience of their phones or laptops via Talkspace, a leading online therapy platform. With diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) top of mind, we’re pleased Talkspace strives to build a diverse provider network, aiming to be representative of a variety of demographics and employee subgroups.
Carelon Behavioral Health EAP provides SIX counseling sessions per issue, per year with flexible access.
One counseling session:
- One phone appointment, or
- One live video or audio Talkspace appointment, or
- One week of unlimited text or video messaging with a dedicated counselor via the Talkspace platform.
Online Mental Well-being Education through Learn to Live
Based on principles of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), Learn to Live’s online resources are designed for health plan members and family members ages 13 and older to learn how to manage chronic mental health conditions at their own pace 24/7 through online, coach-supported programs about:
- Stress, anxiety, and worry
- Social anxiety
- Substance use
And the most recently added topics:
Learn to Live programs are available in Spanish and CBT coaches are trained in cultural competencies to serve a culturally diverse clientele.
We know there is a crisis regarding mental health today. So, let’s do our part to improve the staggering statistics and get support to those who need it. As with any benefits offerings, employee utilization of mental health benefits starts with awareness. Make sure they know what’s available to them as soon as you can. Here’s to a healthier mindset in 2023!
1Anwar, Bisma, LMHC (2022). The Importance of Mental Health. Talkspace. Retrieved January 27, 2023, from https://www.talkspace.com/blog/why-is-mental-health-important/
2Cording, Jess (2023). Mental Health in the Workplace: Trends for 2023. Forbes.com. Retrieved January 27, 2023, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/jesscording/2023/01/16/mental-health-in-the-workplace-predicted-trends-for-2023/?sh=3385a7ff5bb9
3Abrams, Zara (2023). Kids’ Mental Health is in Crisis: Here’s What Psychologists are Doing to Help. American Psychological Association (APA). Retrieved January 27, 2023, from https://www.apa.org/monitor/2023/01/trends-improving-youth-mental-health
4Mental Health at Work. WHO. Retrieved January 27, 2023, from https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/mental-health-at-work
5Basic Facts About Depression. Mental Health America. Retrieved January 27, 2023, from https://www.mhanational.org/conditions/depression
6Mental Health by the Numbers, NAMI, Retrieved January 27, 2023, from https://nami.org/mhstats?gclid=Cj0KCQiA7bucBhCeARIsAIOwr-_mryPgVr3hp8Lz9-i-aijtm5GJWQeY_Q8IM0faz9DI722oo2Q2TFAaAjFGEALw_wcB